Celebration, a large canvas triptych, became the first most expensive piece of Indian art to be auctioned at Christie’s in 2002 for $300,000. (Sahar Zaman is an independent newscaster, arts journalist and curator. It coincided with the launch of a book on his entire career. The hammer fell at Christie's in New York, fixing the price at US $317,500 for Tyeb Mehta's triptych Celebration, and art lovers everywhere opened their eyes a little wider—to take a closer look at this masterpiece, reproduced on the front page of The Times of India on September 24, 2002. • (Tyeb Mehta) Celebration is a triptych painting by Tyeb Mehta • A joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event • A joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event • (play) Celebration is a play by British playwright Harold Pinter (Raza would spend most of his time in Paris and Husain had soon left for Dubai.). On the contrary, violence had haunted him since childhood – he was constantly reminded of the man he had seen being beaten to death below his home during the Partition riots in India. [21] He is survived by his wife, Sakina, their son, Yusuf, and daughter, Himani and a number of grandchildren. Later, he received his diploma from Sir J. J. Thereafter, he visited the New York City, when he was awarded a fellowship from the John D. Rockefeller 3rd Fund in 1968. [13], Tyeb Mehta held the then record for the highest price an Indian painting has ever sold for at auction ($317,500 USD or 15 million Indian rupees) for Celebration at Christie's in 2002. The brilliance of this low key artist was finally recognised by the auction market. [15] A reinterpretation of the tale of demon Mahishasura by Mehta showing goddess Durga locked in an embrace with the demon sold for $1.584 million. Raza and M.F. One could tell that Tyeb wasn’t comfortable with all the attention. Though India's art lovers have admired Tyeb Mehta's work for decades, his real moment in the sun came in 2002, when his triptych Celebration became the first Indian painting to sell at auction for over 10 million rupees. He held the record for the highest price for which an Indian painting has ever been sold, in a public auction. Tyeb Mehta’s Untitled, 1974, the other artwork estimated to fetch seven figures ($1 million - $1.5 million), returns to auction after 17 years, when it was sold for a tenth, $122,580. [22], Mehta's work has been exhibited in the Museum of Modern Art, Oxford, England, and the Hirshhorn Museum. On Tyeb Mehta’s death anniversary, revisiting his paintings inspired from his tryst with violence as a child. At 22 years, during the partition riots of 1947 in Mumbai, while staying at Lehri House, Mohammed Ali Road, he witnessed a man being stoned to death by a mob, this he not only expressed in a drawing but it was to have lasting impact on his work, leading to stark and often disturbing depiction of his subjects. He asked me if ‘Mahishasura’ was my favourite Tyeb work. Celebration, like the Shantiniketan triptych done a decade earlier, drew inspiration from the Charak festival, the spring festival of the Santhals. The revered painter Tyeb Mehta spent the majority of his years contemplating the human condition. Celebrations, a chocolate collection made by Mars, Inc. Star Wars Celebration, an official Star Wars convention; Celebration, a Holiday Class cruise ship operated by Carnival Cruise Lines [10] He also remained an Artist-in-Residence at the Santiniketan between 1984–85, and returned to Mumbai with significant changes in his work. However, unlike the Santiniketan triptych that juxtaposes life and death, the work focused on the… Mehta would show violence quite frequently in his work – but it was not because he was fascinated by it. Representing the battle of good and evil, creation and destruction, the 1989 canvas by Tyeb Mehta is the largest of the only three standing figures painted by the artist. Raza and M.F. Tyeb Mehta was a man of simple tastes and led an uncomplicated life. Thereafter, he visited the New York City, when he was awarded a fellowship from the John D. Rockefeller 3rd Fund in 1968. As demand for his art kept catapulting, however, his style and pace of work never changed. Famous for his Mahishasuras and falling figures, Mehta’s images speak of unspeakable violence and torment. Famous for his Mahishasuras and falling figures, Mehta’s images speak of unspeakable violence and torment. Tyeb Mehta (1925 – 2009) is recognised as one of the Masters of the Contemporary Art Movement. In fact, when Tyeb Mehta moved to Delhi from London, it was Virender who gave him a small place to stay in exchange for a work of art every month. Souza, S.H. (240 x 510 cm.) His name was at the time new to the masses – they had heard of no one else but MF Husain. There was a brief lull till another Tyeb painting ensured the Indian art market broke into the million-dollar club – effectively putting India on the global art map. This habit of his shocked many of his own friends in the art world. She has founded Asia’s first web channel on the arts, Hunar TV. A multifaceted personality, he also dabbled in filmmaker and made a mark there. Painted in 1984 Courtesy: christies.com Tyeb Mehta Celebration Triptych Acrylic … It sold at Christie's for 15 million Indian rupees (US$300,000) in 2002, the highest price a contemporary Indian piece of art has ever sold for in a public auction. The canvases of Celebration are divided in sharp angles of solid colour. Tyeb’s auction records since have been unconstrained. That was the clincher. WhenI met Tyeb in 2005, it was at an evening celebrating the success of ‘Mahishasura’. It was his triptych painting Celebration that, on being sold for 15 million Indian rupees … [22] His film 'Koodal' was awarded the Filmfare Critics' Award in 1970. Celebration, by Tyeb Mehta; Celebration, Florida, a community in the United States, originally developed by The Walt Disney Company. 6 2005: One of the paintings of Tyeb Mehta holds the record for being the highest priced Indian painting. Tyeb Mehta (25 July 1925 – 2 July 2009) was a noted Indian painter. As I recall, his friends SH Raza and MF Husain were also present that night – making it a phenomenal occasion, probably the last time the three stalwarts were seen together. Tyeb Mehta’s painting from 1999, Untitled (Falling Bull) is a virtuosic celebration of the iconic subjects and symbols that embody the oeuvre of this modern master. Pull out any list of India’s top selling art works and you will find Tyeb’s name prominently dominating. Tyeb Mehta Untitled (Figure on Rickshaw) oil on canvas 59 x 47 in. He was frail and sweet. Tyeb Mehta’s childhood tryst with violence marks his paintings in a most beautiful and poignant way. 3.1 crore", Tyeb Mehta- List of Most expensive Indian Paintings, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Tyeb_Mehta&oldid=1001173779, Sir Jamsetjee Jeejebhoy School of Art alumni, Articles with dead external links from June 2016, Articles with unsourced statements from June 2016, Wikipedia articles with MusicBrainz identifiers, Wikipedia articles with RKDartists identifiers, Wikipedia articles with SUDOC identifiers, Wikipedia articles with WORLDCATID identifiers, Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License, This page was last edited on 18 January 2021, at 15:20. He was part of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group and the first post-colonial generation of artists in India, like John Wilkins who also broke free from the nationalist Bengal school and embraced Modernism instead, with its post-impressionist colours, cubist forms and brusque, expressionistic styles. He died on 2 July 2009 at a Mumbai hospital following a heart attack. Mehta produced works that are now benchmarks of Indian modernism celebrated today as influential works of Indian art. [9], He left for London in 1959, where he worked and lived till 1964. He liked ‘Mahishasura’ but couldn’t understand what all the fuss was about. Husain. ... Celebration, a large canvas triptych, became the … His paintings were mostly about falling figures, Kolkata’s manual rickshaw-pullers and the trussed bull. Biography Tyeb Mehta was born on July 26, 1925 in Kapadwanj, Gujarat who lived to be one of India’s most wellknown Indian artist of his generation. There were often large blocks of plain colour, revealing little texture. Tyeb Mehta spent most of life in Mumbai and later in life stayed at Lokhandwala, Mumbai. He received a fellowship from the John D. Rockefeller 3rd Fund in 1968, also in the same year, a gold medal for paintings at the first Triennial in New Delhi, and in 1974 the Prix Nationale at the International Festival of Painting in Cagnes-sur-Mer,[19] France, the Kalidas Samman, instituted by the Madhya Pradesh Government, in 1988, the Dayawati Modi Foundation Award for Art, Culture, and Education in 2005,[19] and the Padma Bhushan in 2007. The privilege had not been accorded to any other work of art in a very long time by the … During the years the artist spent in London, Mehta's style was influenced by the expressionist works of Francis Bacon, but while in New York his work came to be characterised by minimalism. Price fetched: Rs 26.4 crore in 2018. Raza and M.F. [10] During the years the artist spent in London, Mehta's style was influenced by the expressionist works of Francis Bacon, but while in New York his work came to be characterised by minimalism. [4] Later in life, he added Falling Figures made in 1991, based on his experience of witnessing the violent death of a man in the street during the Partition of India riots of 1947,[12] Besides adding several mythological figures into his work, highlighted by the depictions of goddess Kali and demon Mahishasura. He liked keeping his works minimal. He spent most of his life in the suburbs of Mumbai, including his final days. In December 2005, his painting 'Gesture' was sold for 31 million Indian rupees at the Tyeb Mehta is going under the hammer. He received several awards during his career including the Padma Bhushan in 2007. [14] In May 2005, his painting Kali sold for 10 million Indian rupees (approximately equal to 230,000 US dollars) at Indian auction house Saffronart's online auction. Read more about Lunch with BS: Tyed Mehta on Business Standard. [11] He made a three-minute film, Koodal (Tamil for 'meeting place'), which he shot at the Bandra slaughter house, it won the Filmfare Critics Award in 1970. Subscribe To Our Daily Newsletter And Get News Delivered Straight To Your Inbox. The work, titled Mahishasura – a reinterpretation of the tale of the demon by the same name – happened to be the first Indian painting to cross the million-dollar mark, selling for a whopping $1.584 million at Christie’s in 2005. As a young journalist at Reuters in 2002, I remember the front page making prominent mention of an artist named Tyeb Mehta. On Tyeb Mehta’s death anniversary, revisiting his paintings inspired from his tryst with violence as a child. In 2005, he secured a place in the history of the art market by becoming the first Indian artist to have a work sell for over a million dollars. Tyeb Mehta was a well known Indian artist, who was known all over the world for his brilliant painting. Recognition came to him when he was in his 60's. ), (The Quint is available on Telegram. In 2002, he purchased Tyeb Mehta’s Celebration, which, at $317,500 (approximately ₹2.3 crore), set a record for the highest price ever paid at auction at the time for an Indian painting. Raza and M.F. In 2005, Tyeb Mehta's ‘Mahishasura,' an interpretation of the buffalo-demon of Hindu mythology was bought for 1.58 million dollars at Christie's auction in New York. Tyeb Mehta (26 July 1925 – 2 July 2009) was an Indian painter, sculptor and film maker. • (Tyeb Mehta) Celebration is a triptych painting by Tyeb Mehta • A joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event • A joyful occasion for special festivities to mark some happy event • (play) Celebration is a play by British playwright Harold Pinter [7] He was brought up in the Crawford Market neighbourhood of Mumbai, populated by Dawoodi Bohras. The hammer fell at Christie's in New York, fixing the price at US $317,500 for Tyeb Mehta's triptych Celebration, and art lovers everywhere opened their eyes a little wider—to take a closer look at this masterpiece, reproduced on the front page of The Times of India on September 24, 2002. Hewas conscious each time he spoke to my camera. Lot Essay The present painting from 1994 is a seminal work from the Mahishasura series that Tyeb Mehta painted in the 1990s. Tyeb Mehta (25 July 1925 – 2 July 2009) was an Indian painter. He was part of the noted Bombay Progressive Artists’ Group, which included greats like F.N. JFIF `` ExifMM* b j ( 1 r 2 ~ i ' ' PhotoScape2009:07:03 15:58:14 0210 93 R98 0100 Photoshop 3.08BIM ART ART & ARTEFACTS @Tyeb Mehta's Celebration was the first work by an Indian artist 7 07/02/2009 A FotoWare FotoStation x Mehta's Celebration was the first work by an Indian artist to cross Rs 1 crore at a Christie s auction *** Local Caption *** Tyeb Mehta's Celebration was … Read more about Lunch with BS: Tyed Mehta on Business Standard. The sight of a trussed bull being dragged inside a slaughterhouse in Mumbai once moved him to tears. He was elated to hear my reply. Born on July 25, 1925, Mehta was raised in Kapadvanj, a town situated in the Kheda district of Gujarat. He evolved a style and imagery which can easily be termed ‘Indian Expressionism’. Among his most noted later paintings were his triptych Celebration, which when sold for Rs 15 million ($317,500) at a Christie's auction in 2002, was not only the highest sum for an Indian painting at an international auction, but also triggered the subsequent great Indian art boom;[citation needed] his other noted works were the 'Diagonal Series', Santiniketan triptych series, Kali, Mahishasura (1996). Tyeb Mehta Untitled (Figure on Rickshaw) oil on canvas 59 x 47 in. 1925) Celebration Triptych, signed and dated 'Tyeb 95' middle right Acrylic on canvas 94½ x 202½ in. Common themes of his works were trussed bulls, the rickshaw puller, from here he moved to the Diagonal series, which he created through the 1970s, after accidentally discovering it in 1969, when in a moment of creative frustration he flung a black streak across his canvas. I couldn’t imagine how someone that soft-spoken and gentle could create works pulsating with such forceful, violent energy. Tyeb Mehta’s Celebration was the first work by an Indian artist to cross Rs 1 crore at Christie’s auction. Ranjit Hoskote said of this pivotal period, "Mehta appears to have returned to the theme of the Mother Goddess which has preoccupied him. In fact, each time a new Tyeb piece was introduced to the market, it broke its previous record to create a new one. True to his innate sense of self, he continued to spend months on one work, living with it, analysing it, criticising it and finally deciding whether to complete or destroy it totally. (Source: Express Archives) Who is Tyeb Mehta? No surprises then that he created just about 200 paintings in his entire career. (This article was first published on 7 July 2015, and has been reposted from The Quint’s archives on the birth anniversary of Tyeb Mehta.). In 2002, that benchmark was surmounted at Christie’s auction house in New York, when Tyeb Mehta was a well known Indian artist, who was known all over the world for his brilliant painting. [4][8], For a while initially, he worked as a film editor in a cinema laboratory at Famous Studios, in Tardeo, Mumbai. Though India's art lovers have admired Tyeb Mehta's work for decades, his real moment in the sun came in 2002, when his triptych Celebration became the first Indian painting to sell at auction for over 10 million rupees. Justlast year in December 2014, an untitled work of his auctioned for $2.8 millionat Christie’s – ensuring Mehta remains one of the most expensive artists fromIndia. He was part of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group, which included F.N. Tyeb Mehta’s Celebration was the first work by an Indian artist to cross Rs 1 crore at Christie’s auction. Tyeb Mehta (b. For handpicked stories every day, subscribe to us on Telegram). Over … Death & Legacy. India's highest priced artist gets a call from the income tax department but continues to paint A career retrospective is scheduled for later 2009 at the National Gallery of Modern Art, in New Delhi. Unlike Husain, his lifelong friend Tyeb Mehta was not so productive and ironically, while the former celebrated the Indian life the latter actively challenged it, serving instead as a killjoy and a disturbing reminder of human atrocities. School of Art in 1952, and was part of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group, which drew stylistic inspiration from Western Modernism, and included greats of Indian paintings such as F.N. But unlike the better known Husain, Tyeb was shy – silently working in his Mumbai studio and barely producing six to seven large works in a year. Nine years ago, the Indian artist Tyeb Mehta set a record when his triptych painting called "Celebration" sold at a Christie's auction for $317,500. A multifaceted personality, he also dabbled in filmmaker and made a mark there. Tyeb Mehta was an Indian artist known for his paintings of figures set amidst diagonal shapes of color.The artist’s combination of abstracted and expressionistic elements was influenced by the work of both Francis Bacon and Barnett Newman, while the subject matter of falling bodies and religious motifs seen in his painting Kali (1989), came from his childhood recollections of violence. He held the record for the highest price for which an Indian painting has ever been sold, in a public auction. [19], In December 2005, Mehta's painting Gesture was sold for 31 million Indian rupees to Ranjit Malkani, chairman of Kuomi Travel, at the Osian's auction. That single event became the turning point for Indian art. Today, ten years after his death, I can remember the moment I first met him. Souza, S.H. He left for London in 1959, where he worked and lived till 1964. He was part of the Bombay Progressive Artists' Group, which included F.N. Tyeb Mehta The man who celebrated Mahishasura and torched a new high at Christie’s with Times of India’s Celebration. I was vaguely aware that Tyeb was part of the significant Progressive Artists Group of India, set up in 1947. Eventually though, we all woke up to this gem amongst us. I emphatically said NO – my favourite was the awe inspiring triptych ‘Celebration’, I told him. He was associated with the Progressive Artist’s Group and studied painting at the Sir J.J. School of Art. Souza, S.H. India's highest priced artist gets a call from the income tax department but continues to paint He made a three-minute film, Koodal (Tamil for 'meeting place'), which he shot at the Bandra slaughter house, it won the Filmfare Critic… 6 2005: One of the paintings of Tyeb Mehta holds the record for being the highest priced Indian painting. (figure 8) Tyeb Mehta, Untitled (Lovers) from the Diagonal Series. Painted in 1984 Courtesy: christies.com Tyeb Mehta Celebration Triptych Acrylic on canvas 94½ x 202½ in. New Delhi, Vadehra Art Gallery, Celebration: Tyeb Mehta, February - March 1996 . Celebration, a triptych by the veteran artist from the collection of the Times of India Group, is the highlight His voice was affected by thethroat operations he’d undergone but the language of his brush continued to produceworks that haven’t quenched the blue chip art market’s hunger even today. On July 2, 2009, Tyeb Mehta suffered a massive cardiac arrest and eventually breathed his last at a Mumbai hospital. Unlike Husain, his lifelong friend Tyeb Mehta was not so productive and ironically, while the former celebrated the Indian life the latter actively challenged it, serving instead as a killjoy and a disturbing reminder of human atrocities. Tyeb Mehta (25 July 1925 – 2 July 2009) was an Indian painter. Tyeb Mehta, Kali. Tyeb’s strategy was simple – he aspired to make peace with violence. 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